Roku wants its AVOD service where the people are, whether they’re using a Roku device or not.
Today the company announced it is launching its ad-supported service — The Roku Channel — for the Web in the U.S.. This means consumers will be able to access Roku’s library of content from their PCs and mobile phones, whether they have a Roku device or not.
“By expanding The Roku Channel to the Web, we’re broadening the access points to high-quality, free streaming entertainment,” said Rob Holmes, Roku’s Vice President of Programming and Engagement. “With Featured Free, we’re making it easy for our customers to see the great, free content already available on the Roku platform in one place while creating value for our content providers by connecting them with Roku’s growing audience.”
The expansion of the Roku Channel also means increased ad revenue for the company, which has relied heavily on its hardware sales for a majority of its income. Last quarter the company made more money with ads and licensing fees than with hardware sales for the first time in its corporate history. This most recent quarter, roku grew revenue by 57 percent to nearly $157 million.
In addition to the launching The Roku Channel on the web, the company is beginning the rollout of a navigation change to the Roku home screen called“Featured Free,” which provides users with direct links to free content from The Roku Channel, ABC, The CW, CW Seed, FOX, Freeform, Pluto TV, Sony Crackle, Tubi and more. Featured Free includes the latest in-season episodes of top network shows, full past-season catch-ups and more – all free and available to browse in a single experience.